PR66 1894-S Barber dime to beat $1.7m later today

A PR66-graded 1894-S Barber dime will cross the block at Heritage Auctions later today, with bidding now at $1.7m.

The lot is one of nine surviving specimens and the finest PGCS-graded example known.

1894 Barber dime
The 1894-S Barber dime is one of the rarest US coins

It will lead the Platinum Night auction at the Florida United Numismatics (FUN) convention in Tampa.

A major downturn in the US economy in 1893 meant only 24 Barber dimes were struck at the San Francisco branch mint in 1894.

The reason the coins were struck at all, and in such a miniscule number, remains unknown. Over the years various stories, most probably apocryphal, have been put forward.

Heritage comments: "The 1894-S remains the most famous, mysterious, and elusive coin in the entire Barber series and has been the stuff of collector dreams since it was first mentioned in the numismatic press by Augustus Heaton in 1900…

"[It] routinely sells for more than $1 million on the infrequent occasions when an example is offered at public auction, and private sales have been reported for more than $2 million, but the opportunity to own and contemplate one of these magnificent coins is truly priceless."

This coin holds the record for the issue at auction, having sold for $1.9m at Stack's Bowers in 2007 - a sum it looks set to surpass by a considerable margin.  

We have a fascinating selection of coins for sale, click here to take a look.

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